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«Thanks to my wonderful team, my period of internship has proved to be very educational.»

After her bachelor’s degree in ethnology and law, Lea graduated with a master’s in European Global Studies from the University of Basel. She was able to apply what she learned there during her academic internship in the specialist area External Affairs at armasuisse.

Lea Wenger stands in front of a building

 

Where are you assigned and which tasks are part of your daily work?

Up to December 2021, I was employed as an academic intern in the specialist area of External Affairs. I have been working in the same area since January 2022 as a specialist in Political Affairs. To explain what my daily tasks involve is somewhat difficult, as no two days are the same for me. However, on the one hand, I basically work in the area of Political Affairs and on the other hand, I support the organisation of events. One example I could mention here is the organisation of the presentation of the Armed Forces Dispatch 2022, which has been keeping me busy almost continuously for weeks. This is an extremely complex event due to the various stakeholders, the numerous partners involved and the large number of sub-events.

What made you apply for a job at armasuisse? What was your motivation?

My master’s studies in European Global Studies had a strong interdisciplinary focus which I very much appreciated. The academic internship in the area of External Affairs at armasuisse gave me the opportunity to gain initial work experience in the interdisciplinary area. In addition, before I started to work at armasuisse, I didn’t really come into contact with the topics of armament and security policy. The opportunity to immerse myself in a subject area that was completely unknown to me further increased my interest in this position.

How do you categorise your daily tasks in the overall picture of armasuisse?

My role is characterised by the fact that although I’m involved in various different projects, I’m rarely directly at the centre. This involvement in all types of projects was what made my internship so attractive. Observed from a distance, I would probably be described as a service provider for the various competence sectors, but at the same time as one of the nodal points to external parties – in particular to the GS-DDPS and the other departments.

What have you been able to learn so far at armasuisse?

Thanks to my wonderful team, my period of internship has proved to be very educational. I had the chance to participate in all areas and to take responsibility right from the first day. I didn’t just learn a lot about organising events, but also about armament policy and the processes within the federal administration. I’m now trying to apply these positive experiences together with our new academic intern, so that their time here can also be at least as rewarding.

What have you learned from your internship at armasuisse?

A backpack full of experiences. To mention all of them here would probably go beyond the scope of this interview. But it has been the interpersonal relationships and the shared experiences in particular that have made my time at armasuisse so unforgettable. One important thing I learned is that you should get involved as much as possible and – if you are interested in a specific topic – to also actively seek to learn more about the area concerned. Last but not least, I learned in the specialist area External Affairs that deadlines are essential (laughs).

Where do you see yourself in three years?

I hope that in three years I have a job that I enjoy. I would like to continue working in the federal administration – who knows, perhaps even continue at armasuisse.